This is the second pork belly that I've made bacon from. I wanted to use Morton Sugar Cure but our local Piggly Wiggly grocery didn't have any.
I used Morton Tender Quick instead, 1 TBL spoon/pound along with a 1/2 cup of dark brown sugar.
I covered the meat side heavily with black pepper, then put it in a vacuum seal bag and sprinkled the cure/brown sugar mix over it on both sides. I drew a vacuum on it and sealed it. I dated it and put it in the fridge for 10 days, turning daily and kneading the bag to distribute the cure evenly.
I had to move to a larger bowl to make mixing easier.
After 10 days, I removed it and put it in the smoker for about 4 hours. I used a small fire with Cherry and Maple keeping the CC temp below 170⁰. I tried to keep it around 100⁰.
After about 4 hours.
After taking it off of the smoker and while it was still warm, I removed the skin. Then I chilled it before slicing. It slices easier if it's almost frozen.
I learned on the second slab when removing the skin it's easier to put the skin side down and press your knife against the cutting board....just like removing the skin from a fish. This picture shows the wrong way and you can see how wavy the cut is.
I sliced it up with a sharp knife.
Until I had it all sliced.
When finished, I put it in gallon ziploc bags. I was going to vacuum seal it and freeze it, but I don't think it'll be around long enough to freeze!
And this is what I was waiting on!
One thing I learned from using this recipe is it needs to cook at a lower heat. If you try to cook too fast the brown sugar will make it turn black pretty quick. So long as you cook it a little slower it turns out great.